NHS North East Leadership Academy



Are you a formal or informal patient representative acting at a strategic and operational level to influence decision making?


A new programme of learning is now available that has been designed to support patient leaders and emerging patient leaders to be effective and influential during participation and decision making about health and care services.

This programme is for individuals across the North East and North Cumbria who are - or wish to become - patient/citizen leaders in our communities. It will include an introduction to some of the key skills, knowledge and qualities required to engage positively and effectively in the wider health and care system; it aims to accelerate patient and citizen involvement in service improvement initiatives and strategic planning across health and care organisations.

Target audience: Patient representatives including patient governors, lay member representatives on service improvement initiatives or committees/steering groups, volunteers or employees of Healthwatch organisations or members of patient/carer groups in our communities.

For more information and to apply for the Patient Leaders Programme, please download the application form and send via email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by 5pm on Friday 04 August 2017. Successful applicants will be notified no later than Friday 11 August 2017 and may be invited to attend an assessment panel in Durham week commencing 14 August (date tbc). Before applying please seek organisational approval or sponsorship and ensure diary commitments allow attendance on all days.

The Director of Public Health's (DPH’s) Annual Report 2016 highlight the benefits of adopting an asset-based community development approach as a means of increasing social capital, improving health and well being and reducing inequalities across Northumberland.  

Some key issues identified in this year’s report include:

  • An increased recognition of the need to focus on factors which create good health and wellbeing, not just on individual risk factors which cause disease.
  • The fact that conditions in Northumberland are generally supportive of health and wellbeing, but there is still considerable variation within the county.
  • Asset based approaches are not a replacement for investing in services or attempting to address the structural causes of health inequalities, however the approach can reduce demand and dependency on services in the long term and bring about more effective and efficient services.
  • Our communities are already very resilient and solution focussed and are experts in where they live, what will and will not work, who the key connectors are and how to get things done.
  • Our residents have a stake in their community and have a strong sense of pride and usually want to improve the area for the whole community

Download the full report.

The Sill



Wednesday 19th July ahead of the official opening on Saturday 29th July


Northumberland National Park Authority is very pleased to announce the opening of its £14.8m state-of-the-art visitor centre on Hadrian’s Wall. Our natural parks are for everyone and a key part of our vision for The Sill is to allow people of all ages and backgrounds to explore our landscapes and heritage. You are invited to visit on Wednesday 19th July ahead of the official opening on Saturday 29th July. The visit will last one and half hours and consist of a guided tour, activities and refreshments.

If you are able to attend, please sign up for one of the following time slots:14.30 – 16.00, 16.00 – 17.30, 17.30 – 19.00, 19.00 – 20.30

The Sill, which is the UK’s first National Landscape Discovery Centre, is the result of an innovative partnership between Northumberland National Park and YHA England and Wales and has been made possible by National Lottery players through a £7.8m grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF).

The Sill is the single most significant initiative to be undertaken in rural Northumberland in a generation and will transform how people engage with landscape, nature and the great outdoors.

The Sill is the perfect gateway for people of all ages to explore and enjoy the landscapes, history and rich culture of Northumberland and the wider region and we hope you can join us to realise our ambition.

The Sill building features fixed and temporary exhibitions focusing on landscape, culture and heritage, several learning and event spaces, a 90 seater café showcasing local produce, a world-class Youth Hostel, a rural business hub to house and support new and emerging rural enterprises, a shop packed with local produce, arts and crafts, a tourist information service and a fully accessible Whin Sill grassland roof, the only one of its kind in the world.

We would be thrilled if you were able to join us for a behind the scenes look at what we have achieved before The Sill opens to the public.

RSVP is essential. RSVP to Sharon Robson before Friday 14th July either by calling 01434 611 536 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Northumberland County Council in partnership with Silx Youth Project, a Blyth based organisation, has launched a guidebook aimed at helping first time housing tenants.
The Young Tenants’ User Guide has been developed directly with Silx Youth Project.  The guide is based upon the project’s own practical experience of working with young people and aims to provide information on everything a young tenant may need.  Pitched at 18-25 year olds, it tackles issues such as finance and how to keep on top of your bills, budgeting and saving money on utility bills, as well as how to claim for any benefits they may be entitled to.  The guide also explains what a tenancy agreement is and the importance of understanding what tenants are responsible for and the council as the landlord, including what can happen if those responsibilities are not met. The guide also includes tips on how to stay safe in your home, as well as issues such as sexual and mental health.
The idea for the guide came from feedback from young people in the Blyth area who were struggling to manage in social or private rented accommodation.  Now, each new young tenant will be given the guide at their tenancy introduction meeting with a council housing officer.  Copies are also available from the Silx offices on Church Street, Blyth.

Northumberland VCS Assembly is seeking a member to represent South East Northumberland on its Executive Committee.

Northumberland VCS Assembly exists to support the voluntary, community and social enterprise sector by providing an independent, inclusive and influential voice for the sector.  Its Executive Committee is drawn from across the spectrum of Northumberland’s Voluntary and Community Sector.  Members of the committee have a corporate responsibility to represent the VCSE as well as their geographic area or theme of interest, to feed back to their groups and to inform the committee of issues relevant to the groups they represent.
Committee meetings tend to be held from 12.00 noon to 2.00pm at Northumberland CVA, Ashington on a Wednesday, usually four times a year, although timing and dates are flexible to ensure that all members can attend. A proportion of the Committee also attend Northumberland County Council’s VCS Cabinet Advisory Committee, which meets quarterly and is held at different venues across the county.
Committee members hold office for a minimum of two years and any travel expenses will be paid.
If you are interested in the role and would like more details please contact Ann Atkinson at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  or tel:01670 858688